Critics say women are not treated as equals within the Jehovah's Witness faith and they point to the 2010 textbook for Elders called "Shepherd The Flock Of God" as a good example of this. Women are mentioned, especially in advising Elders on how to interact with females in the congregation. However the masculine words 'he', 'him', 'his', etc. are consistently used when addressing how the elders are to shepherd the flock of God. Women are barely acknowledged compared to men.
Some women may regard this as disrespectful and may take offense. Even though men are required to treat 'sisters' in a respectful way, women are not allowed to be Elders or Ministerial Servants.
Opponents of the faith also notice this. They say that when one looks at the wordology of the 2010 instruction manual for Elders, men are referred to 709 times. Women are acknowledged 50 times. In other words, based on the use of masculine gender words compared to feminine gender words, men are given 14 times more prominence than women in this very important top secret organizational publication. 
How important are women in the Jehovah's Witness religion? How many times does the instruction manual for Elders mention women and how many times does it mention men? Are women equals? Here are some interesting statistics.
|Word||# of Times Each Word Occurs|
1. Almost immediately upon release the highly classified document, "Shepherd the Flock Of God", in Sept 2010, copies were leaked to 'spiritually weak' Jehovah's Witnesses and nonbelievers outside the organization.
2. Samuel Herd, member of the Governing Body of Jehovah's Witnesses, says women have smaller brains and because of this, her role is one of subjection and submissiveness to the man.
3. Men are not treated as equals either. According to the Watchtower's official and secret rule book, Shepherd the Flock of God, only Elders get to read the official rule book. Jehovah's Witnesses are ranked based on their loyalty and service to the Watchtower. The rank from top to bottom for all JW's is this. Governing Body, Elders, Ministerial Servants, active JW's, spiritually weak JW's, marked JW's, disassociated, and disfellowshipped JW's.